Women and Climate Change
Examining Discourses from the Global North
268 pp., 6 x 9 in,
- Published: February 14, 2023
- Publisher: The MIT Press
How ideas of gender and climate change intersect with our path to a livable future.
When you think "climate change," who comes to mind? Who's doing the science, the reporting, the protesting, the suffering? In Women and Climate Change, Nicole Detraz asks where women in the global North figure in the picture, what that means, and why it matters. Her answers fill critical gaps in what we know about the politics of climate change and gender.
Representations of climate change, like perceptions of gender, can make a profound difference in understanding expectations and actions around social, cultural, and political issues. Interviewing women living in the global North who work in the climate change sphere, Detraz examines the crucial links between notions of climate change and gender—in particular, how women are portrayed in climate change debates. Where is their presence or absence recognized? What tasks are they expected to perform? What factors influence their roles? The answers provide a nuanced account of the characteristics, conditions, and positions associated with women's activities in and experiences of climate change—a multifaceted portrayal of women that also demonstrates the generalization and essentializing that can hinder goals of sustainability and gender justice.
Because gender is a social construction, Detraz reminds us, change is possible. Her book offers the suggestion, and the hope, that identifying connections between ideas of gender and climate change might also alter our vision of a livable future.
“In this major contribution, Detraz unpacks assumptions about women's agency in climate politics. Multiple storylines of women and climate change inspire readers to reflect on stereotypes and on changes needed.”
Annica Kronsell, Professor and Chair of Environmental Social Science, School of Global Studies, University of Gothenburg
“Nicole Detraz revolutionizes our understanding of the gendered politics of climate change discourses. Along the way, with inspiring creativity, she offers novel insights into how to advance justice and sustainability.”
Peter Dauvergne, Professor of International Relations, University of British Columbia
“In beautifully illuminating the myriad roles that women play in climate change work, Detraz reminds us that representation of women's work is crucial for the future of sustainability and justice.”
Sikina Jinnah, Professor of Environmental Studies, UC Santa Cruz; coauthor of Greening through Trade